Wednesday 29th April
The Tories unveil their short-term masochistic plan.
Harsh new laws are required to ensure that the Tories keep their promises. That is according to the Tories, and this morning they have announced that they will pass a law ensuring that they cannot raise VAT, National Insurance, or Income Tax.
George Osborne has told us that we can be sure that this promise will be kept. Sure, George, but what about all your other promises? Won’t you have to pass laws making it illegal for you to not keep them? That should take up about half the Parliament, and then you can get on with actually implementing your programme, or governing as it’s sometimes called.
Unveiling the lock, Osborne said “We here in the Conservative Party believe in clamping down on liars, bounders and cads like the Conservative Party. It’s part of our short-term masochistic plan. We are going to bind ourselves to this commitment and, if we contradict ourselves, we will bring the full force of the law crashing down on ourselves. That is, unless we change the law again.”
The suggested sanctions for the new law range from being sent to the Headmaster, to the cessation of tuck, to having Grant Shapps become your official biographer.
Ed Balls has reacted to the Tories reinforced pledge on not raising VAT.
“I think there’s a good phrase in the English language: once bitten, twice shy,” he says, from his fortress of irony.
Ed, if we are once bitten, twice shy, where the hell does that leave you?
There is no denying the fact that the parties are trading in calm, considered engagement for a blunter instrument, akin to them trying to persuade voters by banging them over the head with an inflatable hammer, repeatedly. It's “Project Fear” from all sides, and so, once again, we’ve got a load of Balls to get through.
The Shadow Chancellor has been depicting a dystopian vision of the terrible future under a Conservative Government: “Not only will they cut neighbourhood policing and your NHS, they will come around to your house at night and smash up the place, and then sneeze all over you and give you Spanish Flu, and laugh at your pain because there’s no police to stop them and no GP to treat you, and then they'll raise VAT and send themselves to jail, but there won't be any jails to go to, because they've all be sold to private companies, and be turned into Travelodges! This is the Britain the Conservatives stand for!"
Not to be outdone, David Cameron is launching his own “Project Fear”, by saying “I’ve seen the books. I know what needs to be done.”
He keeps on repeating “I’ve seen the books”, again and again, in a harrowed, distant tone. “I’ve seen the books”, “I’ve seen the books”; before eventually he says "I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments will be lost in time... like tears in rain...”
Strong stuff, and all delivered with Cameron’s continuing infectious enthusiasm. Look at the rapturous faces behind him:
That there is the power of charisma.
Incidentally, the Lid Dems don’t do Project Fear. They are too upbeat for that. They do Project Total Denial.
Ruth Davidson, Conservative Leader in Scotland, is Scottish and likes Margaret Thatcher., and she doesn’t care who knows it. She’s out, loud and proud, and in a tank. Just like Maggie. Come and have a go if you think you’re hard enough.
The Mili-Brand video is out, and what it consists of is one person who lives in a world of well-meaning vagueness, talking to another person who lives in a different world of well-meaning vagueness, culminating in them vaguely agreeing about life and setting the world to rights. It’s a late-evening chat from university basically.
What’s really odd is that Ed Miliband adopts Tony Blair’s physicality, legs splayed, resting his left-hand on his knee, whilst firmly gesticulating with his right. Then he begins to talk in Mockney (in his own way): “Look! I’m not diminishin’ Ruper’ Murdoch, righ’.”
Ed assures Russell that he’s a man who stands up to Rupert Murdoch. For those who can’t recall what Ed Miliband standing up to Rupert Murdoch looks like, here’s a picture of him doing so last summer:
Tomorrow, Russell is interviewing Natalie Bennett and Caroline Lucas of the Greens, and he says that he is going to them because they are “women”. Right… Viva la Revolución!
Events depicted may differ from actual events. In fact, this is a work of fiction, with some facts. But mostly, it's nonsense.